Family and friends of Vipin Patel gathered for his funeral today. - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

12/26/05

Family and friends of Vipin Patel gathered for his funeral today.

Family and friends of Vipin Patel gathered for his funeral today.

The 65-year-old owned a convenience store in Garden City. Friday morning a group of thugs robbed him at his store then they shot and killed him.

Many describe Patel as a hard worker and a family man.

Hundreds came to his funeral to say a final goodbye to a man they truly respected and loved.

Dell Magana says, "He always had a hug for people he knew well, And it's such a shame this has happened to him."

Patel fell in love with this community when he moved here in 1987, that's the same year he opened this Kwik Way convenience store on Highway 80.

Both Garden City's and Savannah's mayors attended his funeral. So did Chatham County Commission Chairman Pete Liakakis.

Liakakis says Patel has been robbed before. But he, like many others, can't understand why this time the robbers felt the need to kill him.

Liakakis recalled, "He was not the type of person who would resist so this was something that never should have happened, knowing of his demeanor, he's a loving individual."

Liakakis says his death is one more reason the community needs to come together to help police fight crime.

Police arrested three of the five men they say committed this crime.

Anthony Haynes, Harry Newkirk, and Jonathan Johnson are in the Chatham County jail facing murder charges.

Reported by: Michelle Paynter,  mpaynter@wtoc.com

Powered by Frankly